Thursday, February 16, 2012

Streets of Laredo (1949)

We interrupt this Stewart Granger movie marathon for Streets of Laredo, a William Holden movie I've wanted to see for ages. Thanks to a kind soul on youtube, I was finally able to view it!

I liked it a lot. It's about three outlaws, played by Macdonald Carey, William Holden, and William Bendix. They end up splitting up, and Holden and Bendix sort of accidentally become Texas Rangers! Carey stays the outlaw course. Well, you can guess there's more than one showdown coming for these guys, and the movie does not disappoint. The movie has some of my favorite themes: friendship, betrayal, the importance of giving your word, redemption.

There's a young woman, Rannie, played by Mona Freeman. She falls for Macdonald Carey from the first moment she lays eyes on him, not realizing she's fallen for a rat. Fortunately, Holden is still around to provide the third, stable side of the love triangle. I couldn't decide if she was annoying or I liked her, and I sort of vacillated between the two feelings the whole movie.

There's also another bad guy, Calico, played with delightful relish by Alfonso Bedoya. He runs around the territory collecting protection money from the farmers and cattlemen, stealing their cattle when they can't pay his exorbitant rates. He is quite the nasty piece of work.

It was a solid B Western, with good performances, an entertaining, though mostly predictable, plot, and enough action to keep me happy. Some of the action was surprisingly brutal. There were a couple moments that did make me scratch my head, such as why Holden's character decides to face one of the bad guys alone, when he's already got a group of Texas Rangers with him. Um... leaving your backup behind? Rather dumb. Still, it was a quite enjoyable way to spend 90 minutes. William Bendix had some great lines, and I loved his character. Macdonald Carey was smooth and slick and I couldn't wait for the final showdown with him. And Holden? Looked fabulous.

2 comments:

  1. Ooh, thanks for this review. I am definitely going to watch this one SOON. I am desperately in need of a Holden fix. I haven't watched one of his movies since January 27th (my birthday), and I didn't really care for it (The Lion).

    Western or not, this one sounds good. I am going to try to watch it this weekend.

    Thanks for the heads-up that it is available through YouTube.

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  2. You might like this one! It's not so straight-up Western as some, so it might appeal more to you. If you do get to see it, I look forward to your thoughts!

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